As I’ve spent much of the last week looking back at the past year of Soulstone Train, it was kind of inevitable that at some point I would end up looking in the other direction. When it comes to the hobby I like to play the long game and have long term plans of where I want to get to and what I want to achieve. In the coming year I want to achieve something that I’ve not done before and that is to have a fully painted army for a large scale game.
The first decision to make was what game this army would be for. As far as I could see the main options were;
· Bolt Action
· Flames of War
· Warhammer Fantasy
· Warhammer 40,000
Each of these has pros and cons;
Pros: For the most part the minis re actually very nice, especially on the Hordes side of things. Some of the Colossals are really nice.
Cons: The game sucks balls.
Pros: There’s some interest locally so I’d probably be able to get a game. The rules look pretty decent and the models aren’t too expensive.
Cons: There’s a lot of painting one colour and there’s not much variety between minis. As a hobby project I’m not sure how enjoyable it would be.
Flames of War
Pros: My SST co-host Shane is really into it which suggests the game is pretty decent and I’d be able to get a game.
Cons: The minis are tiny and multi-part, I suspect that my hobby enjoyment would be near zero. Also, it’s a lot of painting one colour and the final result would not be that impressive on the table.
Pros: There’s lots of local players so getting a game would be easy. The minis are generally pretty nice and there’s variety to make the hobby side reasonably enjoyable.
Cons: It’s made by the devil. It costs a fortune to have a tournament ready army. Large units mean painting a fair few of the same mini making the hobby a bit of a chore.
Pros: It’s the dominant game at my local club so games/tourneys are easily accessible. The minis are generally nice. I used to play 20 years ago so totally know the rules.
Cons: It’s made by the devil. It’s expensive (although I think not a bad as fantasy).
If this was a gaming project, Bolt Action would have been the clear winner. Unfortunately it’s not a gaming project however, I can see myself buying in at some point. As it is a hobby project, I’m sorry to say the winner was Warhammer 40k. In my youth I owned three armies for 40k and never got around to painting any of them. As I want to correct an oversight from my past, it makes sense for me to revisit one of my old armies. This narrowed down the choices to Eldar, Chaos Marines or Dark Angels.
Of those three, one stood out to me as being a bit more varied in terms of the hobby side of things, that being the Eldar who were also my first 40k army. Since making that decision I’ve heard rumblings that they’re completely bent but, as I have no plans to put effort into an army list, I’m pretty sure they’ll not be in my hands.
I’ve started by ordering the battle force box with the intention of buying extra stuff only when I’ve fully painted what I have. From there I’m going to just buy what I like the look of (Striking Scorpions are high on the list!) and then pad it out later if I can’t make a legal army list. The plan is to buy, build and paint a legal army to a decent standard in time for York Garrison’s annual Summer Solstice tournament which is the biggest event the club currently run. I have no doubt that I’ll come last and ebay the army straight after the event but it’ll be one more thing scratched off the hobby bucket list.